While he says he plans to continue his work as a pollster, Luntz worries that he isn't the right man for the job.
“I've told my friends and colleague that they need to find someone to replace me because they still need to hear from the public,” he said. "My frustration is that almost every news network is going to the experts instead of the people. That they listen to those who are paid to have views rather than the American public who has a view and is either ignored or betrayed."
"I just don't know if I'm the right person to do it because I have to tell you that I'm losing my temper and becoming exactly what I criticize," he worried. “We conducted a poll in the last ten days, 95% of MSNBC voters voted for Joe Biden, 96% of CNN voters voted for Joe Biden and 93% of FOX News viewers voted for Donald Trump. Cable news programs are preaching for the choir and that is a huge challenge because it means that you only go to the network that you support. It is tribal news at its worst. ”
Full transcript at the bottom.
On the eve of the #InaugurationI held a focus group of ½ Biden voters and ½ Trump voters.
Here are some words they used to describe America now:
• "Search for solutions"
• "Passed away"
From there it quickly escalated … pic.twitter.com/C2uo5EkApf
– Frank Luntz (@FrankLuntz) January 20, 2021
Check out Luntz's full highlight role:
FRANK LUNTZ: They just don't believe they're getting the truth, which is what they want, and they can't distinguish between what former President Trump is saying and what others are saying. That they actually get their news to confirm themselves rather than inform themselves, and that's a problem.
It's the responsibility of the news media to tell the truth, provide the facts, and if you want to give an opinion, make it clear that that's exactly what it is. The problem with the Trump people is they think it's all an opinion. They think it's an opinion of the left and they can't find any place to validate them and what they believe.
HOWARD KURTZ, FOX NEWS: But isn't it also true that people on the liberal end of the spectrum are trying to find news that confirms their views?
FRANK LUNTZ: Here's the problem, we conducted a poll for the past ten days, 95% of MSNBC voters voted for Joe Biden, 96% of CNN voters voted for Joe Biden and 93% of FOX News viewers voted for Donald Trump. So these cable news programs are preaching to the chorus and that's a huge challenge because it means only going to your network that supports you. It's tribal news at its worst.
HOWIE KURTZ: How much of a problem is that for President Biden whose inauguration was based on unity, and half of Republicans don't believe he legitimately won the election?
FRANK LUNTZ: It is almost impossible for him to be heard among those who have written him off.
It's terrible for democracy, it's the reason why I told Bret Baier a few nights ago and I have to stop these groups, stop interviewing these people because honestly I realize I'm not the focus here of am, but it is so disturbing to hear this anger and this distrust and this gall coming out of people.
And what you didn't play is worst of all when they attack each other and you can't stop them. I think the ultimate consequence of this is that we have lost our ability to reason with each other, to listen to each other, to learn from each other.
Howie, this is a disaster. I know you are analyzing the news. I am analyzing public opinion and I have to tell you that not only am I scared, but I am disgusted by it.
HOWIE KURTZ: Let me play a short clip of what you said to Bret Baier about fox.
So you feel depressed, feel that maybe the problems cannot be resolved? Are you ready to walk away from your business?
FRANK LUNTZ: I told my friends and colleague that they need to find someone to replace me because they still need to hear from the audience. My frustration is that almost every news network goes to the experts instead of the people. That they listen to those who are paid to have views rather than to the American public who has a view and is either ignored or betrayed. I believe your listeners have the right and a responsibility to ignore what other Americans think, and the problem is no one is bringing it to them. I just don't know if I am the right person to do it because I have to tell you that I am losing my temper and I am becoming exactly what I criticize.
I think this is a great country, great people and they have been treated terribly by too many people in your profession.
HOWIE KURTZ: So given that – and I accept the criticism. Considering you feel like you're losing your temper and you're going to be part of the shrill voices here, and I know you get angry when you do focus groups. Is this it for you, does it sound like you made a decision?
FRANK LUNTZ: I have made the decision, I just need the courage to follow him.
By the way, I don't feel that way about you.
. (tagsToTranslate) Frank Luntz